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Brunton Inspire Charger: Power on the Go

I’m always looking for ways to reduce my big ole footprint on the planet, so I’m paying more attention to my energy needs.  I’ve swapped out alkaline batteries for rechargeable batteries, and I’ve found new ways to charge my essential electronic gadgets.  One of those ways is my Brunton Inspire Charger.

According to Brunton, this little power pack is the equivalent of 1742 AA batteries and can be recharged more than 500 times, saving me $1872 I’d spend on those batteries. The Inspire has a rugged, practical design.  It has one USB port and one mini USB port, and comes with a power cord that wraps easily around the charger and plugs into both ports when not in use.  Very handy. 

I found the Inspire simple to use.  When I want to charge it, I plug the USB end of the cord into the USB port on my wall outlet or into the USB on my laptop.  It takes three hours to fully charge from the wall or from a car battery outlet (DC adapter included) and six from a laptop.  I charge mine while I’m working or at night so it’s ready when I leave the house. 

I most often use my Inspire to charge my cell phone.  All I have to do is plug in the USB cord to the Inspire and plug the mini USB end into my phone.  Then I leave it on the table or toss it into my tote, and forget about it.  I like having the Inspire with me when I’m out in the car because I know I can always have a way to charge my cell phone if I run into trouble on the road.  (I can charge my iPod Shuffle, my cell phone, and top of my iPod Classic in less time than it takes to watch a movie.)

There’s a handy power button on the front so I can turn off the power (and save it for the next charge) when not in use.  Lucky for me the Inspire automatically shuts itself off, too, so I don’t waste any power.  A small row of blue lights shows me when the charger needs more juice.

The Inspire has a rubberized, water-resisant shell that’s  easy to grip.  It’s also just the right size to stash into one of my pack pockets.

Bottom Line: This little power pack gives me piece of mind when I'm on long drives or outdoors without a power source.--E.D. (Dec 2010)

BUY ONLINE: $72, on sale for less at Amazon.

Manufacturer's Site: www.bruntonoutdoor.com

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When hiking or camping, always carry the "10 Essentials":

Extra clothing, extra food and water, lighter or water-proof matches and fire starter, map in waterproof envelope, compass, pocket knife, sunscreen and sunglasses, flashlight or headlamp, first aid kit, emergency shelter.

Source: Seattle Mountain Rescue and Seattle Mountaineers.